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Editor's Column: The month with a well-intended and useful cliche

Published: Sunday, November 4, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 19:01

Although it will be published after, I am writing this column on the first day of the month of November. This day is traditionally marked in the college community as a “day after,” more memorable due to the events that happened the night, or the weekend, before, than what actually occurs on this day.

  

After talking to a friend who was reminiscing about her Nov. 1 last year, however, she said it was actually a very fun night, in part because she started it out with a toast to “new beginnings with the beginning of a new month.” As humans, we’re always trying to change for the better. It’s just part of our nature and leads us to success. As someone who had a less than ideal month of October (you may have read my article last week about living with crutches on campus—inspired by my current personal experiences), I am ready to continue moving forward with this month with the hope of reaching some semblance of normalcy by its conclusion, meaning being able to walk on my own.

  

Now, not all students can have such obvious, definitive goals for this month, but I’m pretty sure we could all come up with something to improve our Boston College lives a little bit. At this point, we’ve been on campus for enough time that the novelty of being back at school has worn off—midterm season tends to have that effect. We can all take a step back and reflect on how we’re using our time and if that’s really what we want to do with it.

  

One thing being on crutches has afforded me is not only excess time, but time to be used for reflection. I know that the minute I can walk again may or may not be one of the greatest anticipated moments of the semester for me. BC students are often privileged enough that we take a lot for granted. It is only after certain aspects of life are taken from us that we can really appreciate them. These reflections of mine are very fitting for this time of year, with Thanksgiving right around the corner. This is not a rant in any way, but rather a reminder to students who may be feeling jaded with life at this point to be thankful for what they do have. As morbid as it sounds, things could always get worse. Just having the ability to take these classes at BC, presumably in subjects we’re interested in—even being able to actually walk to these classes—is a gift.

It’s hard not to make comparisons to past semesters at school or expectations we had coming into the school year, yet nothing works out how we plan it. Trust me, the last thing I pictured myself doing this school year was having to call EagleTransport every morning. We have to play with the cards we’re dealt. I’m hardly the first person to say any of this, but my recent situation has made me really come to appreciate the small things in life: someone holding a door for me, getting me a chair at a party, carrying my coffee to class for me, and everything my friends have been doing for me on a daily basis. Those small things really mean the world to me, as much as I wish I could do them myself. When I observe others now, it just pains me to see people not taking full advantage of the opportunities available to them and appreciating what they do have. Let’s be honest, most of us at BC are incredibly fortunate.

So if you’re feeling a little down and counting away the days until Thanksgiving break, stop now. Take a little time to yourself, recognize that you probably have more free time now that midterms are over, and ask, “How can I fully take advantage of the next two weeks I have here at BC?”

Whether it be changing your daily routine a little, incorporating some community service even if it’s just to feel good about helping others, or just going out to lunch with friends you haven’t seen in awhile—take everyone up on every invite, and enjoy yourself to the fullest extent. Do it. Be selfish in the sense that you employ all available to you, and make sure you just take a second to appreciate all the good that has happened to you this semester.

 

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